Let us sum up the topics treated in this volume and the conclusions to which they lead. We started with man's ascent from a primitive animal- like soul dwelling in holes and caves of the rocks up to the sophisticated denizen of the atomic space-age and its affluent technological society.
We evaluated that society as it manifests itself in the West, and studied its interaction with the more leisurely Orient, illustrating with an Iranian's reaction to his sojourn in Europe.
We examined the reasons for the growth of Christianity; and then scrutinized the history of its rise, its split into sects, and the effects of these things on the world, not least in anti-Islamic propaganda honored with the ferocity only accorded to a rival who is truly feared. We saw Islam and Christianity face to face in Africa.
We considered the pursuit of happiness in a machine-made culture, its worship of sex, its wild seeking of sensations in materialistic ways, and the reaction of drop-outs who revolt against its drab monotony.
We saw the effects of permissiveness over alcohol; the desperate contrasts between the haves and the have-nots allowed in the world by the irresponsibility of those whose religion should make them care; the bloody wars conducted by partisans of the society for the prevention of cruelty to animals; race discrimination, and the breakdown of the -family; artificial shortages of vital goods engineered by vested interests in certain essential commodities.
Part 2 turned to look at what Islam has to offer this disturbed world; its doctrine of Man, of Eternity and Judgment, of social life on earth and the individual's duties therein; its emphasis on reason; its education program; its political implications, and its demand for total self-alignment of each human will with the Supreme Will of the Creator of all things visible and invisible.
Part 3 dwelt on Islam's way of dealing with social problems: alcoholism, family life, racism, the class war and world peace.
Finally we asked: What is the position of Islam today, what is its task and what role should it and could it be playing in helping mankind out of the morass into which the divisive materialisms of East and West threaten to plunge us one and all?
The endeavor has been made to be scrupulously fair, to relate only known facts, to make deductions from such facts and to envisage the world as it might be. On a merely materialistic and human plane there may seem to be grounds for a disillusioned and despairing pessimism. But the marvels of renascence which have happened again and again in mankind's history, the knowledge of the great gifts which the Creator has implanted within His creatures, the certainty of His pardoning and merciful compassion towards all those whom He has set upon this earth, and above all that faith which is given to those who set their trust in Him and seek in daily prayer to put themselves at His disposal to be guided on the straight road, provide us with the optimism of a sure hope.
We therefore end with "Insha'Allah all things shall be turned to good." The Muslim's "Insha'Allah" is not, as some Westerners have falsely claimed, a supine, fainéant fatalism which accepts whatever comes without lifting a finger to shape the course of events: it is, on the contrary, an active enlistment in God's service, to serve with the obedience that a willing slave both owes and gives to a beneficent Master who owns him heart and soul. If enough men and women in the world adopt that militant obedience of the "Abedeen", who can doubt that Almighty Providence will once again pour forth the bounty of His grace upon a perishing world?